Router table fence -advice wanted

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Tim Sherwood

Tim
Corporate Member
I want to build a new router table fence. I would welcome any ideas from those of you that have made your own. I hope to incorporate several features:
hold down feather boards
a safe but flexible bit guard
replaceable zero clearance inserts
good dust collection

I'm currently using a "bargain" commercial, split, micro adjustable , aluminum one that is too complex to function right.
 

Henry W

HenryW
Senior User
Re: Router table fence -opinion

Tim:
I am of the simple is good design school,. especially on router set ups. I have a router insert in my TS extension board; this is my "router table." I have constructed a simple L shaped fence that is clamped down to the TS extension, and has a board 90 degress (i.e perpendicular) to surface. Fence placement is by clamps (i.e no through holes or slots in the TS extension).

I believe the best zero clearance fence is created with a piece of scrap luan that is double side taped to the face of my 'fence'. instant zero clearance piece.

If I need hold downs I clamp them to the vertical portion.

I do not have a guard - and should - but that too is easily created (plexiglass or acrylic box with a finger that is clamped to the vertical fence.

THe more features you incorporate, the more complicated it gets (isn't that what you don't like about current setup?).

Decide what you REALLY need (and a guard is one of those things), and start there. It need not be pretty - mine is two pieces of 1x6 oak scrap that are screwed together and have some triangle blocks to maintain the 90 degree angle. I threw it together 6-8 years ago wanting to see whether it would do, and it still "does".

Henry W
 

Ed Fasano

New User
Ed
Tim,

I took the plunge, abandoning all of my earlier hybrid shop-made router table setups, and popped for a Veritas steel router table top and a Bench Dog Pro fence (#40-006). It’s kind of an odd, but effective combination.

I use the Veritas magnetic vac adaptor and Bench Dog Feather Locs. I built the upper and lower cabinets with good casters, drawers, doors, etc. It has worked out very well. My results are now more accurate, more consistent. Setups are easier, faster and more secure and the arrangement is safer. Had these components been around 20 years ago, I wouldn’t have wasted as much time and money on other various setups. It was the right way to go for me, but these components were quite a bit less expensive just a few years ago.

I should add that there are a lot of woodworkers who enjoy fabricating fixtures and jigs more than me. And a lot of those same woodworkers can complete shop-built devices much more quickly than me, enabling them to put their handiwork to good use – in short order.

As an aside, If anyone wants an Oak Park Enterprises router plate, bushing, fence and box joint spacer fence set, mine is sitting idle and can be had for Oak Park prices, less 75%.

Good luck,

Ed
 

BrianBDH

New User
Brian
Simple fence of melamine and plywood with t-track to hold feather boards.





Back side shows knobs for adjustment.

I don't have a guard, which I should. I also don't have dust collection, but I have an opening for it.





Brian
 

gator

George
Corporate Member
I won't go into the rest of the fence I have as I took a different route. But, I hope the picture shows the zero-clearance insert system I incorporated. It has reverse bevels on each end and clamps between the two sides of the sliding fence. I made several of them and I can put a new one on and slide the fence back through the bit and have a perfect profile z-c insert. The sliding fence faces ride on a backer fence so the insert does not fall through the gap.


George
 

Tim Sherwood

Tim
Corporate Member
Thanks for the help guys. I think I'll try to combine a couple of these ideas. I like the homemade ,simple is better approach. But I'll add a track to mount feather boards and a guard. Unfortunately I won't be able to work on it for a couple of weeks. I'll try to post some pics when I get back to it.
 

rsaucedo

New User
Ras
I made Norm's - actually built the entire router table with base. it has a pretty good fence with dust collection. if you need the the top it is really good too. since it's made of MDF it can be made extremely cheaply for just the fence. the most expensive thing was the dust collection chute. if you know some one with scraps of formica/high preasure laminate you can make all kinds of zc inserts really cheaply too.
 

Joe Scharle

Joe
Corporate Member
You're getting some great advice, but I thought I'd throw some more in the pile. I've had to square my fence on average, once a year, but I don't mind since I check it before use anyway. It's aluminum with melamine sliding faces with a T-track. Not only is the T-track great for fingerboards, but absolutely essential for mounting zero clearance tall fences like these. Clamps just get in the way. Oh, and the jig is my carrier for routing tall work.


 
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